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Re: USMC tank in China

January 30 2005 at 8:45 AM
Dave Barrett  (Login DBear82)
from IP address

Response to USMC FT-17 in China service, 1927-28.

Hey Kurt,

This is an interesting subject, and one which I just recently completed myself. The Marines in China during the incident did not have the FT-17 per se. They utilized the M1917, which is the American-made version of this tank. It differs significantly from the French version.

Turret - All M1917s were fitted with the riveted octagonal turret, and not a cast one.

Armament - The M1917 mounted either a .30 cal. Marlin tank machine gun, or a Browning M1919 .30 cal. machine gun with a small shield (after 1919). Other versions mounted a 37mm M1916 cannon.

Exhaust - The most visible sign of an FT-17 being an M1917 is the exhaust muffler being on the left side, instead for on the right.

There are quite a few photos on-line of the M1917 tank. Just do a Google search and you can find them. If you have problems, feel free to e-mail me, as I have quite a few from the research I did for my recent project.

Speaking of which, I am not sure what scale you prefer to work in, but I would highly recommend the MR Modellbau M1917 conversion. It is an excellent conversion, and only needs a few tweaks to make it very accurate. Again, if you have questions on it feel free to ask.

If you can locate it, I would also recommend Steve Zaloga's book on the FT-17 {Osprey Vanguard 46, The French Renault Light Tank} as it covers this topic pretty well. It also includes an actual photo of an M1917 being off-loaded from a ship in China in 1927 (so the box art is correct in this case).



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  1. Thanks Dave... - Kurt Isbrecht on Jan 30, 2005, 8:06 PM
    1. No problem - Dave Barrett on Jan 31, 2005, 5:42 AM

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